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Introduction to Wood Materials

Learn about joists, beams, sheet goods, and the properties of wood materials used in construction today.


  • Access to course material for 30 days.
  • Train with a Pro

  • Spanish Subtitles Available

  • Mobile Access

  • 7 In-depth Lessons

  • Certificate of Completion

  • Practical Resources

Lesson Plan

7 Video Lessons · 1H 31M

  • 1. Course Overview

    Humans have been building with wood for thousands of years. Pro builder Jordan Smith discusses that history, different types of house framing, and the advantages of using wood in construction.

  • 2. Properties of Wood

    What is wood, really? Learn the composition of wood, the difference between hardwoods and softwoods, and how we measure properties like hardness, density, and strength.

  • 3. Forces and Stresses

    In construction, wood has to withstand a lot of different forces. Learn about compression, tension, torsion, and shear, and how to think about loading scenarios.

  • 4. Lumber Grades, Sizes, and Types

    Why isn't a two-by-four actually 2 inches by 4 inches? What's pressure treated lumber? What grade lumber should you use on your build? Jordan answers these questions and more.

  • 5. Engineered Wood

    Jordan explains LSLs, LVLs, plywood, and the advantages and disadvantages of using engineered lumber instead of solid wood.

  • 6. Joists and Glulams

    Learn about a few key structural members that are commonly used in light construction.

  • 7. Sheet Goods

    Sheet goods are what keep the elements out of a finished house, and what help the structure resist shear forces. Jordan explains a few key techniques used to manufacture modern sheet goods.

Who it's for: This course is for those beginning in the trades, or those wanting to learn more about wood materials.

Key Topics

  • Hardwoods versus softwoods

  • Wood fundamentals

  • Loading scenarios

  • Lumber grades

  • Engineered woods (lsls, lvls, plywood)

  • Sheet goods

5 Out of
5 stars

Overall rating of 16 students

Become Job Ready

This course will increase your knowledge for jobs like:




Apprentice Carpenter


Construction Laborer


Carpenter's Assistant


Carpenter Helper



For more information on these roles, visit our career page.

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Team Pricing
> 6 seats
Save $5 per seat
$70 per seat

Common Questions

  • What is MT Copeland?

    MT Copeland helps you further your career in the building industry with expert-led online education that will make you a better, smarter tradesperson.

    Our training courses give you a foundation in construction fundamentals and trade skills with real-world applications and best practices to help you grow on the job.

  • What do courses include?

    Online courses include professionally produced videos taught by leaders in the trades and supplementary learning material such as quizzes, assessments and downloadable materials to help you acquire new skills. Watch anywhere, always at your own pace. We keep lesson videos short so they’re easy to watch after work or on your lunch break. You can finish a course in one sitting, or space it out over a week or two.

  • Can you learn with MT Copeland outside of the u.s.?

    Yes! You can take MT Copeland courses from anywhere in the world. Our courses are online, so if you have access to the Internet, you can watch our training videos. Courses are taught in English, with English captions and Spanish subtitles available.

  • Where did the name MT Copeland come from?

    MT Copeland was named after a legendary educator who promoted the idea that training in a specific trade paired with a knowledge of general business principles opens up a whole new world of career possibilities. We believe in the same powerful combination of skills and knowledge.

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